SPEAKERS CONTENTS INSERTS
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[H.A.S.C. No. 10648]
NATIONAL NUCLEAR SECURITY ADMINISTRATION AND IMPLEMENTATION OF THE PROVISIONS OF TITLE XXXII
SPECIAL OVERSIGHT PANEL ON DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY REORGANIZATION
COMMITTEE ON ARMED SERVICES
HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
ONE HUNDRED SIXTH CONGRESS
MARCH 16, 2000
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SPECIAL OVERSIGHT PANEL ON DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY REORGANIZATION
MAC THORNBERRY, Texas, Chairman
DUNCAN HUNTER, California
LINDSEY GRAHAM, South Carolina
JIM GIBBONS, Nevada
JIM RYUN, Kansas
FLOYD D. SPENCE, South Carolina
ELLEN O. TAUSCHER, California
NORMAN SISISKY, Virginia
JOHN M. SPRATT, Jr., South Carolina
IKE SKELTON, Missouri
Brian R. Green, Professional Staff
Peggy Cosseboom, Staff Assistant
C O N T E N T S
Page 3 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Thursday, March 16, 2000, National Nuclear Security Administration and Implementation of the Provisions of Title XXXII
Thursday, March 16, 2000
THURSDAY, MARCH 16, 2000
NATIONAL NUCLEAR SECURITY ADMINISTRATION AND IMPLEMENTATION OF THE PROVISIONS OF TITLE XXXII
STATEMENTS PRESENTED BY MEMBERS OF CONGRESS
Tauscher, Hon. Ellen O., a Representative from California, Ranking Member, Special Oversight Panel on Department of Energy Reorganization
Thornberry, Hon. Mac, a Representative from Texas, Chairman, Special Oversight Panel on Department of Energy Reorganization
Bowman, Adm. Frank L., Director, Naval Nuclear Propulsion Program
Gioconda, Brig. Gen. Thomas F., Acting Deputy Administrator for Defense Programs, U.S. Air Force
Glauthier, Hon. T.J., Deputy Secretary, Department of Energy; accompanied by David Klaus, Director, Office of Management and Administration, Department of Energy
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Gottemoeller, Rose E., Acting Deputy Administrator for Defense Nuclear Nonproliferation, Department of Energy
[The Prepared Statements submitted for the Record can be viewed in the hard copy.]
Bowman, Adm. Frank L.
Gioconda, Brig. Gen. Thomas
Glauthier, Hon. T.J.
Gottemoeller, Rose E.
Tauscher, Hon. Ellen O.
Thornberry, Hon. Mac
DOCUMENTS SUBMITTED FOR THE RECORD:
[The Documents submitted for the Record can be viewed in the hard copy.]
Charts on Title 32 Compliance Status
Memorandum submitted by Eric J. Fygi, Deputy General Counsel of Department of Energy on Dual Office Holding for the National Nuclear Security Administration
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Memorandum to Hon. Thornberry from Morton Rosenberg on the Effect of 5 U.S.C. 5533(a) on Dual Officeholding in Positions Created by Title 32 of the National Defense Authorization Act, FY 2000
Table on Dual Hat Positions as of March 1, 2000
QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS SUBMITTED FOR THE RECORD:
[The Questions and Answers can be viewed in the hard copy.]
NATIONAL NUCLEAR SECURITY ADMINISTRATION AND IMPLEMENTATION OF THE PROVISIONS OF TITLE XXXII
House of Representatives,
Committee on Armed Services,
Special Oversight Panel on Department of Energy Reorganization,
Washington, DC, Thursday, March 16, 2000.
The Committee met, pursuant to call, at 10:05 a.m. in room 2216, Rayburn House Office Building, Hon. Mac Thornberry (Chairman of the Panel) presiding.
OPENING STATEMENT OF HON. MAC THORNBERRY, A REPRESENTATIVE FROM TEXAS, CHAIRMAN, SPECIAL OVERSIGHT PANEL ON DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY REORGANIZATION
Page 6 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Mr. THORNBERRY. This hearing of the Special Oversight Panel on Department of Energy reorganization will come to order. First let me welcome our witnesses and guests.
This Panel was charged by the Chairman of the Full Committee with overseeing the reorganization of the Department of Energy and the transition to the new National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA). In February, the Panel issued a preliminary assessment of the Department of Energy's implementation plan and expressed a number of concerns, including the intention of the department to dual hat a number of employees. We also expressed concerns about unclear lines of authority, too much emphasis on retaining DOE authority over NNSA and a lack of compliance with a number of budget provisions.
On March 2, this Panel held a hearing in which we heard from several outside witnesses. Among them, the General Accounting Office (GAO) testified that they did not believe much had changed within the management structure and that the Department of Energy was missing an opportunity. The Congressional Research Service (CRS) testified that dual-hatting was contrary to the letter and intent of the law.
Later on March 2, the Full Committee had a hearing in which Secretary Richardson testified, and Secretary Glauthier was there testifying as well, where a number of these concerns were further discussed.
One of the things that I would like to put in the record is a memorandum from the American Law Division of the Congressional Research Service dated March 14, 2000, which further responds to the allegation that a law passed in Congress in 1964 permits widespread dual-hatting, and it goes further to discuss and reemphasize the CRS position that it is against the letter and intent of Title 32 to have the dual office holding, which is probably a more accurate term, that the Department intends.
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There is concern that some of the fundamental issues which have been identified in a number of reports are not being fixed, and I think all members of the Panel are interested in seeing that this is done right. Mr. Secretary, let me just quote from one passage of the report by the President's Foreign Intelligence Advisory Board (PFAIB), which came out last year.
As you know, there have been many reports over the years that have talked about difficulties, but on page 41 of the PFAIB report they say, ''There can be no doubt that the current structure of the Department of Energy has failed to give the nation's weapons laboratories the level of care and attention they warrant. Thus, our Panel is recommending deep and lasting structural change that will give them the accountability, clear lines of authority and priority they deserve.''
If I had to summarize the concerns at least that I have, it is that this change be of a deep and lasting nature that addresses the concerns that they and other people have expressed and that it not just be a rearrange the boxes and a paper over sort of approach.
On March 2, when the Secretary was with the Full Committee, he expressed the view that getting good people to serve rather than organizational change was really the key to DOE's problems, and I think I join most other members that I know of in being very pleased with the selection of General Gordon and am very anxious for him to get on the job, but I also think that it takes more than people.
You have to get and keep top quality people. You have to have the resources for them to do the job, and you have to have a clear, efficient organizational structure with accountability and a clear focus, and I think it is primarily to that third element that this law was directed.
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The other thing that hangs over me is that if we cannot make this work within the Department of Energy, there are a number of our colleagues who want to remove it entirely and move it to the Department of Defense, which I think would be a big mistake, or some other independent agency, and so our goal is to see that the national security interests of the country are furthered and that the problems that are in report after report are really fixed, not just superficially addressed in some way.
Let me turn at this point to the distinguished Ranking Member of the Panel, Ms. Tauscher, for any comments she would like to make.
[The prepared statement of Mr. Thornberry can be found in the Appendix.]
STATEMENT OF HON. ELLEN O. TAUSCHER, A REPRESENTATIVE FROM CALIFORNIA, RANKING MEMBER, SPECIAL OVERSIGHT PANEL ON DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY REORGANIZATION
Ms. TAUSCHER. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. I would like to join you in welcoming the witnesses today and look forward to hearing your input on the status of the NNSA implementation.
We all know that the National Nuclear Security Administration was established by Congress last year to provide a sensible, efficient structure to the national security components of the Department of Energy. Our main goals are to eliminate the bureaucratic morass that plagues the Department and jeopardizes its mission, and to provide for accountability in the system.
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I am very pleased that the NNSA is starting to take shape, and I thoroughly endorse Secretary Richardson's selection of John Gordon to head the new administration. I look forward to his nomination and speedy confirmation.
I also appreciate the time and effort that today's witnesses have committed to establishing the NNSA. I know how hard you have all worked. I know how many times we have met. I would especially like to thank Mr. Klaus for his ability to be as receptive as possible to come down and to talk to us.
Mr. Glauthier, thank you again for your ability to be responsive, too. I think that we have moved pretty far in getting ourselves to a place where we understand that we are all looking for the same kind of cooperation.
In having said that, though, I am still very concerned about the Department's reliance on dual-hatting. Secretary Richardson said, as the distinguished Chairman has said, when he appeared before the Committee on March 2 that only 17 or 18 employees were dual-hatted at DOE and NNSA.
As I pointed out to the Secretary, 17 or 18 people who we spoke about are not Employees No. 1425, 987 or 1722. Instead, many of the people who are dual-hatted serve in very, very key positions at the very top of the pyramid. I recognize that some dual-hatting may be necessary on a short term and very temporary basis, but we cannot permit dual-hatting to continue beyond this year. Relying on dual-hatting in the long term would only perpetuate the bureaucratic tangle that we are attempting to fix.
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Beyond dual-hatting, I am interested in hearing from the witnesses about their experience in erecting the structure of NNSA. Have you found any areas in Title 32 that you believe need to be changed to allow the administration to flourish? Are there issues that were not addressed in Title 32 that you believe we need to take a look at?
Mr. Thornberry, the other Members of the Panel and I have long hoped for an opportunity to have this kind of cooperation and this type of open, free discussion on the opportunities for us to fix any parts of Title 32 in future legislation, and I want to thank the Chairman again, and I certainly want to thank the Chairman of the Full Committee and the Ranking Member, Mr. Skelton, for recognizing Congress' role in this issue.
For too long it is easy for us to kick the can down the street and to blame various administrations for what has been a longstanding problem recognized by legions of people inside the Department of Energy vis-a-vis our nuclear complex. We, for the first time, are standing up to our responsibilities.
We authorize and appropriate the money that allows these agencies and these departments to flourish and exist, and we have got to take our own oversight responsibility, and I think this Panel has gone a long way, and I want to congratulate the Chairman. I appreciate all of their continued hard work, and I look forward to the testimony of the witnesses.
Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
Mr. THORNBERRY. I thank the gentlelady. As usual, she makes a very good point.
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On our first panel today we have Deputy Secretary of Energy, Mr. Glauthier, and we also have David Klaus, Director, Office of Management and Administration, Department of Energy. I understand that you gentlemen are the primary team responsible for implementing the transition.
In our second panel we will have each of the Deputy Administrators for the different program areas that are involved in NNSA.
Mr. Secretary, thank you for being here. I would turn the floor over to you.
[The prepared statement Ms. Tauscher can be found in the Appendix.]
STATEMENTS OF HON. T.J. GLAUTHIER, DEPUTY SECRETARY, DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY; ACCOMPANIED BY DAVID KLAUS, DIRECTOR, OFFICE OF MANAGEMENT AND ADMINISTRATION, DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY
Mr. GLAUTHIER. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. It is a pleasure to be here to be able to discuss the implementation of this law with you.
As you indicated, David Klaus, our Director of Management and Administration, is with me. Gary Falle, as I indicated to you earlier, is unable to be here. He is at the White House in meetings on oil issues right now with the Secretary. We will speak to the topics, though. He and I have co-chaired this. David has served as the principal person to actually run the process.
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Eric Fygi is also with us. He is our Deputy General Counsel, and to the extent that we have legal questions we may want to draw on him as well.
As we testified on March 2, we have put the NNSA into place. We have taken the initial steps to try to bring the management team together, and we did announce on that day the selection of Air Force General John Gordon to be the new first Administrator of the NNSA. We look forward to the White House completing the vetting process and forwarding his nomination up to the Senate as soon as possible.
We also, as you know, have sought a change in the law which we believe is going to get widespread support so that the first administrator can serve for a term of three years and not have to end his term at the end of this Administration.
We think this is very important in order to get the NNSA off the ground properly, get the office structured and that it would apply just to the first administrator. After that, of course, administrators ought to be named at the same time as transitions of administrations along with everyone else who are the senior leadership of each administration.
Last week we also saw the President nominate Madelyn Creedon to be the Deputy Administrator for the Defense Programs portion of the NNSA and hope that that will proceed swiftly and encourage the Senate to act on that promptly and be able to get that part of our management team in place.
I appreciated the comments that both of you made in opening this hearing. We agree on the objectives of the NNSA. We agree that we need to establish better accountability. We need to eliminate the bureaucratic confusion that has existed for some time, for many years, in terms of lines of authority in the Department of Energy. It is not just in the NNSA, but across the whole organization that there has been less effective management than there ought to be.
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We announced last April a management reorganization which was directed at trying to establish a more clear line of accountability and better separation between staff and line functions in the Department. That is one of the things we want to try to carry through as we implement this. That there is a very clear line of accountability for all of the line functions so that from the Secretary and Deputy Secretary down to the NNSA down to each of its programs, the Defense Programs will carry right through all of the field sites where the actual work is done.
Of course, the real work of the Department is done out in the laboratories and the plants on the other sites, so we need to have that very clear.
The staff offices in the Department are in a position now where they are no longer free to simply issue policies or guidance across the organization at will as they were formerly able to do. We have a process in place which I share through the Field Management Council which reviews any policy that a staff office wishes to issue across the organization and gives the offices an opportunity to respond to that, to help us understand the implications of such a policy before it is put in place, and only after I sign off on it is a policy then put in place where the line organization is expected to follow it.
The line is responsible for actually carrying out those sorts of policies, so a clear separation, a better accountability and an organization that will work well I think are objectives we all can agree on. Then let's work together to get this NNSA implemented in a way that gives us some benefits there.
We do look forward to having a new Under Secretary in our management team to give the visibility and a better coherence to our national security objectives and actions, so we think that is going to be useful for everybody.
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If I can summarize a few things, we submitted some written testimony for you. I will not go through all of it, but I do want to note that as of March 1 we have transferred just over 2,000 federal employees and some 37,000 contractor employees into the NNSA.
We have incorporated into the Defense Programs Naval Reactors, Fissile Materials and Disposition and Nonproliferation of National Security components of the Department into the NNSA. We have set up the organization charts, mission and function statements, delegations of authority and other steps that are needed to put this in place.
Having said that, it is just the beginning of the implementation, and, as we noted at the earlier hearing, we have not fully developed the budget, for example, for the NNSA. We have submitted in this year's budget portions of the budget that were clearly NNSA, but to develop the rest of it will take some time as we see the whole organization take shape, so we expect that some of these actions will be fully in compliance with the directions by the next budget cycle when you will see everything fully put together. We hope to work together over the course of the next weeks and months to finish many of the other actions.
I would like to comment on the dual-hatting for a moment. As was noted, we have 18 position out of the 2,000 federal employees who are dual-hatted. We have tried to do this very selectively in a very thoughtful way to only do it where it is really necessary. Many of the jobs or positions that are dual hatted have very specific functions.
Some of them are quasi-judicial such as our Board of Contract Appeals, which is three of those positions, the Office of Hearings and Appeals, the Department's ethics officer, the civil rights officer. Those are positions who hear complaints, whistleblower complaints, other complaints and need to have the ability to make a decision and then offer direction on the basis of what they have done, so those are six of the 18.
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We also have dual-hatted positions in procurement to be sure that the contracting authorities that are exercised in all of our field offices are fully authorized so that the obligations of the government to its contractors will not have any questions about the ability to follow through and make commitments and pay the bills. Those are administrative and legal dual hats that we have provided, so we really think we have been very careful.
One of the dual hats also is the one in the environmental safety and health area, David Michaels, who is the head of that office. We have dual-hatted him for just one purpose and only that purpose, and that is the shutdown authority. If there is an environmental or health or safety risk that is so imminent that a plant, a facility, needs to be shut down, he is dual-hatted for that purpose, but nothing else. The rest of his responsibilities are all outside the NNSA.
I would like to give an example of how our restructured Department will respond, and how these offices inside and outside the NNSA will operate. Unfortunately, this is a real example. It is one dealing with groundwater contamination at the Pantex Plant which we responded to on March 6, just a few days after the NNSA actually went into operation.
To start with, the Department made a determination on whether or not we needed to shut down the facility, the authorities I just mentioned. That determination was made with the Defense Programs' personnel who run the plant and who are part of the NNSA, in consultation with the Environment, Safety and Health staff of the Department.
That worked as it should. The consultations went forward. They decided they did not need to shut down, but the determination worked appropriately, brought the right expertise in to make that decision.
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Following that decision, Secretary Richardson then directed a team of experts from the Environment, Safety and Health staff to go and investigate the situation and provide a report back to the Secretary. That staff was only there to investigate and report, not to go take over the situation. They were not going to direct and control what was going to happen.
Finally, Secretary Richardson directed experts from the Office of Environmental Management, who are familiar with the kind of contamination involved, to provide the officials with the most recent information they had and to help them in developing a response plan. But, once again, they are not there to direct and control the response.
The responsibility for corrective action rests with the Office of Defense Programs within the NNSA. All these actions were appropriate, entirely within the NNSA Act, and they are the best way to get experts from throughout the Department down to Pantex to help solve the problem. That is what we need to do when we are faced with a real problem that threatens health and safety.
Having summarized what we have done and some of the initial steps, I would like to conclude the statement here and be happy to answer any questions that you might have.
[The prepared statement of Mr. Glauthier can be found in the Appendix.]
Mr. THORNBERRY. Thank you, Mr. Secretary.
Mr. Klaus, is there any statement that you would like to make in addition?
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Mr. KLAUS. No.
Mr. THORNBERRY. Okay.
Let me just ask first a general question, and that is where are we as far as you all are concerned as far as implementing the new law? Are there further actions that either of you intend to take in the next few weeks or months while we are waiting on the Administrator?
Are we pretty much in a holding pattern? You have done what you are going to do and wait until General Gordon is confirmed and let him get on the ground and move things? Where are we in the process?
Mr. GLAUTHIER. There are some actions that we still are going to take. I will turn to David in a moment and have him expand on it.
I think, for example, in the personnel area the 2,000 personnel who we have transferred over we want to clearly have responsibilities directly in the NNSA. There are another maybe 100 personnel who are in a gray area. It is not quite clear whether they ought to be in the NNSA or not, and so that examination is going on. We hope to have that concluded this month.
There may be some other paperwork procedures that are needed, but by and large we feel we have put the pieces in place. What we really need to do now is work with the organization to get it to operate in the mode where people understand the accountability, they understand who they work for and how this operates.
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We had some confusion initially. I think that is to be expected, people initially asking should they respond to this person or that. The very first question that came up was classic. It was a question of should the people within one of these components in NNSA respond to requests from the Inspector General. Well, our answer is yes, you do have to respond to that, and that clearly falls within the statute, but it is an example of the kind of question that people have. They want to understand. They want to do this right.
I expect as the next weeks go forward that our big focus will be on trying to make it clear that people do have that accountability, they do report in to the chains of command that they should, and they have the responsibility for running the programs.
As you know, the missions have not changed. The programs are responsible for running these operations, and those are very important. We need to be sure we do not lose sight of the real business here and make this work.
David, would you comment?
Mr. KLAUS. Yes. In the process of pulling together the implementation plan and then executing the implementation plan, we pulled together a group of basically the administrative officers from across the Department. That group met under the direction of Jim Powers, who is within my organization and reported directly to me.
That group is still meeting on a weekly, if not more often, basis to deal with the remaining issues that are there. I believe we probably accomplished 100 percent of everything that was essential to have the NNSA in effect and operating on March 1, and probably about 90 percent of what we will ultimately do.
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There are, as Deputy Secretary Glauthier said, about 200, 150 to 200, individuals who really were close calls, if you will, primarily at the field offices, individuals, for example, who might be at the Oakland Field Office who have done safety and health work for all the facilities, Livermore, as well as Slack and Berkeley, et cetera, and it is not clear whether those individuals go into the NNSA or whether they do not go into the NNSA.
We have set a deadline of April 1 to make determinations with regard to all individuals, and that is one of the things the administrative task force is currently doingcoming to a determination with regard to all personnel. As I said, it really is not a question of taking people out of NNSA. These will only be additional people who will be shifted over.
Similarly there are, as Deputy Secretary Glauthier said, day to day issues that come up. Every time you go through a new exercise that is a departmental exercise, whether it is the meeting of one board or another or whether it is where the mail goes literally, does this issue go to the NNSA, et cetera. We have essentially kept the administrative group together as an individual problem solving group.
The other thing we are working on is to try and sort of get proactive about giving guidance to people and helping the directors of the programs inform their organizations; Tom Gioconda, Rose Scott Miller, Admiral Bowman. All of those organizations are really the primary avenue in which they will communicate with the employees in their organizations as to how this operates, and we are working with them and with the non-NNSA employees of the Department to help them understand how we operate in the new, reorganized structure.
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Mr. GLAUTHIER. If I could add one other type of thing we are doing is the directive system at the Department. There are 350 or 400 directives that are the formal and legal directives as to how various procedures should be followed. Those are being reviewed.
They were too cumbersome and too numerous to actually go through all of them and make modifications. Some of them will need to be changed in order to apply appropriately or perhaps be tailored to the NNSA, so the initial implementation we simply carried over the directives, and those now are being reviewed. There will be some revisions done to make that work.
Mr. THORNBERRY. I want to come back to that, but let me finally ask one other question at this point. Are you, Mr. Secretary, in contact with the White House encouraging them to move these nominations along so that the people can get in place?
Mr. GLAUTHIER. Yes, we are. I spoke to the Director of White House Personnel, Bob Nash, a couple of days ago. They are committed to expediting the process.
Mr. THORNBERRY. Keep after them.
Mr. GLAUTHIER. Thank you.
Mr. THORNBERRY. Ms. Tauscher.
Ms. TAUSCHER. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
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Secretary Glauthier, at the full hearing Secretary Richardson again reiterated what has been his longstanding concern that he needed more authority, greater authority, to direct the employees of the NNSA.
Now that you have some limited experience with the governance of the NNSA, what evidence has materialized that could support the Secretary's concerns that he needed more authority?
Perhaps you, Mr. Klaus, can speak to the life cycle of the NNSA to the extent that how long do you think this shake out tour is going to take? What do you think it is going to mean? When do you think you have kind of seen the movie, so to speak, and gotten it all past you, and when will we actually have a sense that the firm footing that we are looking for has been accomplished?
Mr. GLAUTHIER. Well, let me take the first part of your question, Congresswoman, the question about the authority.
We have requested that a change be made to give the Secretary the authority to direct any employee within the NNSA. As it is currently drafted, it is only the authority to direct such employees through the Administrator. I would be included in that. The Secretary has, as one of his initial actions, also delegated authorities to me, which are contemplated in the Act, to be able to provide direction to the NNSA.
On a practical basis, the travel schedules, for example, may have the Administrator out of the country or something, and if we want to direct the Deputy Administrator for Defense Programs in some way it seems appropriate for us to be able to do that, but the statute, strictly speaking, does not provide for it.
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Other agencies that have been cited as examples, prototypes, if you will, for this kind of a semiautonomous agency, do have that authority. In the Department of Commerce, for example, NOIA employees are all able to be directed by the Secretary of Commerce, so we do not feel it is a radical departure. It is just one specific change that has been requested.
If I could have our Deputy Counsel add to that?
Mr. FYGI. I think in assessing the Secretary's position, time and again in our internal deliberations about this matter the Secretary has emphasized the point that he is not worried about these authorities from his own standpoint. He is every bit as much concerned, perhaps even more so, about the fate of his successors, so that in seeking to identify in the last two weeks of operation whether or not the need for that kind of secretarial authority has been proven or disproven I think misses the mark a little bit.
The real question involves long-term relationships and the capacity of future secretaries, as well as this one, to be responsible for the operations of the agencies for which they remain legally responsible.
Ms. TAUSCHER. Well, I have no doubt that the Secretary is meant to and allowed to, and the intent of the law was to have the Secretary be able to go into the Deputy Administrator and, especially if the Administrator was out of the country, be able to direct them to do something.
I think there is a big difference between could and should. I have been in management all my life. If you talk to my parents, they would say I managed them in the womb. The question I have is not can, because I believe that the Secretary very clearly has the authority and the ability to manage the agency and to dip in and talk to people and direct them to do things. I guess the question is should he or she.
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I think that a longstanding complaint in the Department and now in the new NNSA entity is that they were getting direction from anybody who could pick up the phone and talk to them and at many times contradictory and diffuse requests.
You know, from my point of view to the extent that you wall off that opportunity to have too many people telling people what to do, and especially a Secretary, is not a bad thing, but, at the same time I am not sure that anything has really come up that would support the Secretary's continued request for more authority.
Mr. GLAUTHIER. If I might, Congresswoman, I think we agree on the basic problem. We do not want anybody and everybody giving direction to any parts of the organization, whether in the NNSA or outside the NNSA.
That is really one of the major reasons we made the reforms we did last April to try and straighten out the lines of authority, to have staff and line functions in their appropriate roles and have some discipline in the Department. We think that is working.
It takes some time to really make sure that the Department fully is using it that way, but it is really only this one specific authority, which is for the Secretary to be able to make that kind of direction. He is not asking for the delegation to let anybody and everybody provide that direction.
Mr. KLAUS. Congresswoman.
Page 24 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Ms. TAUSCHER. Yes?
Mr. KLAUS. I was going to say the analogy that comes to my mind is really one of a congressional staff or a Committee staff, and it is as though you have basically said to the chairman of the Committee you may direct your staff director and you may direct your staff that work on the staff of the Committee ''only through the staff director.''
As a practical matter, I know that the chairman of the Committee picks up the phone every day and calls the counsel who is working on the issue and says I want you to do this. As a purely technical matter, if that was the analogy you have not operated consistent with what the rules provide.
I think the question is whether the Secretary, and I am impressed by the extent to which Secretary Richardson continues to think of this in terms of accountability and responsibility. He believes he is accountable and responsible to manage the Department, and he does not believe that he has the authority, clearly has the authority commensurate with what he is being held responsible for and accountable for.
If you think of it in the analogy of the Committee structure, I just do not think he wants any quarrel as to whether when he picks up the phone and calls the Committee counsel and says I need you to do this on this action or draft this amendment for me or, you know, see if you can work and get somebody to help do that that he has the authority to do so.
Ms. TAUSCHER. Once again, I think this horse is dead so I am not going to hit it again, but the truth is that this is a question in my mind of could or should. I would argue with you that the Secretary can do whatever he likes, and he has the authority to do that. He can call virtually anybody in the 2,000 person organization and tell them what to do. My question is should he or she do that.
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You know, from my point of view as someone who has been an executive for a long time, I have a very good chief of staff. I hold him responsible for what my staff does. I talk to my staff all the time, but I do not reach into the organization just because I feel like it and direct somebody to do it because then I cannot hold him accountable if I have my fingerprints all over everything.
So I think this is not a question of can. I believe that in this statute the Secretary can and is enabled to do this. The question is should he or she do it, and I think that is where the dispute is right now.
Mr. KLAUS. Thank you.
Mr. THORNBERRY. Mr. Sisisky.
Mr. SISISKY. I am really struck with the argument that you just gave. I was not going to get into that part, but I see the assistant general counsel wanted to speak.
Would you go ahead and speak? Let's see you argue that point. I am not a lawyer, but at least let's see you argue that point if it makes sense.
Mr. FYGI. Well, I was going to make a modest overlay point that might actually have the virtue of shortening this element of the discussion.
Page 26 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Insofar as the Ranking Member of the Panel has opined that nothing in the statute forecloses the Secretary from wielding the command authority that he wishes to have returned to him, which is the same kind of authority that every other Cabinet Secretary enjoys as a matter of law, to the extent that the Ranking Member holds a different legal view than do we that is interesting. But the fact remains it is our responsibility to understand and authoritatively to interpret the law so that while we appreciate the policy sympathy that her view of the law reflects, it is not dispositive, and we still have a legal problem.
Mr. SISISKY. Now, you have interpreted the law. I assume you are the one who interpreted the law that says he does not have to do these things. If you do not want to follow the law, let's change the law. That is pretty easy to do.
I have not admitted to do it, but you said it is within the law. Everybody I know says it is not within the law. You are not following the law.
Mr. FYGI. What is the it that you are talking about, Ms. Sisisky?
Mr. SISISKY. The dual-hatting.
Mr. FYGI. Well, I was not responding to the dual
Mr. SISISKY. And again about the Secretary being able to if somebody is out of the country. If Secretary Cohen is out of the country
Page 27 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Mr. FYGI. That is right.
Mr. SISISKY.does the Defense Department close up?
Mr. FYGI. The Defense Department's statutory authorities placed in the Secretary of Defense are exactly the kind of authority we want restored to the Energy Secretary, but the NNSA Act departed from that norm. That is the fundamental point on the secretarial authority issue that we must keep in mind.
Mr. SISISKY. Have you got a list of what changes you would like to see in Title 32 now?
Mr. GLAUTHIER. Congressman, that is the only change that we have actually requested be made.
Mr. SISISKY. Again, you put me at a disadvantage. I am not a lawyer, but the legal and practical justification of these departs from the letter and the spirit of the law. It is the spirit of the law.
You knew when we went into this thing I think the spirit of the law, because I talked enough to the Secretary. He gave me hell for a long time. I tell you. I mean, I knew in the spirit of the law that he knew what he was talking about.
Let me ask you another question. Who hires the general counsel for the NNSA?
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Mr. FYGI. I think under the NNSA Act, the Secretary retains the appointment authority. The structure of the NNSA Act is interesting in that while it provides for some personnel appointing authorities to the NNSA Administrator, it does not relieve the NNSA as an organization from legal dependency on other personnel related authorities.
That is among the reasons why, in the implementation steps that occurred before March 1, the Secretary executed a batch of delegations to equip the NNSA Administrator with lots of the legal authorities that the statute did not directly afford, so the question of who hires the general counsel of the NNSA, as things stand now it is the Secretary's call, but, like anything else in the dynamics of a major sub-Cabinet element within the Department, I think that question will evolve over time with administrations, and each administration will have the opportunity and the flex to adopt its own practices there.
Mr. SISISKY. Is there a written opinion, by the way? Does DOE have a written opinion on the discussion you had with Ms. Tauscher?
Mr. FYGI. We do not have a written opinion on the question whether the Secretary's authority and limitations are as we described. The closest thing that occurs to me is the analysis that was first done by the Congressional Research Service in November contained a rather lengthy analysis of the legislation as it evolved from the Senate passed version to the ultimately enacted version, and it touched upon this element of the statute as well.
Its interpretation there was the same as our understanding of the statute; that it did make a change to the Secretary's authority requiring the Secretary as a matter of law for the first time to funnel his directions through the Administrator of the NNSA exclusively.
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Mr. SISISKY. Would you explain to me about the clean up that you talked about, where was it, Pantex?
Mr. GLAUTHIER. Yes.
Mr. SISISKY. Tell me in order of what happened and how it could have been better or worse.
Mr. GLAUTHIER. Well, we hope that we are doing it in the right way so that if it can be better we would like to hear some suggestions, and we will do that.
This is groundwater contamination from trichlorethylene that is in the aquifer there and is a serious concern. We just learned about it at the management levels about two weeks ago. On the 6th of March, after the NNSA was in place, we took action. At that point then it was within the structure. Defense Programs run that site, the Pantex site, so they are responsible for the people on the scene.
Our Environmental Safety and Health (ES&H) program, which is a staff office, has the technical expertise in dealing with these issues and can draw on the experts and try to help us figure out, first of all, is the problem serious enough to shut down the plant. The answer was no, but we needed to ask that question and answer it, so we needed the ES&H experts to work with the Defense Programs people.
That worked fine, as it should. The staff office works with the line office. There is nothing in the statute that prohibits that kind of interaction. The staff office cannot direct the line office, but they can work with them. They can advise them. They can provide their expertise, so that worked.
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Then the next step was what should we do? We did not shut it down, but how do we get a better handle on the scope of the problem and begin to devise a corrective plan. So in trying to carry out investigations the environment safety and health experts worked again with the defense programs people to devise a technical plan to assess the problem.
Our departments in the environmental management part of the Department, who are the ones running our clean up at our various sites, are also working to assist them in developing a plan of action. What would you do to correct this? How should we pump this up and treat it or other actions?
Mr. SISISKY. Excuse me. The NNSA was responsible for this. Is that correct?
Mr. GLAUTHIER. They are responsible, that is right. And they will be responsible for devising the plan and carrying out the plan.
Mr. SISISKY. I am taking too much time, but I am having a problem with all of a sudden somebody is responsible. You are not going through that whole layer of bureaucracy. That was the reason for this bill.
Mr. GLAUTHIER. And we agree with you. That is a benefit, and that is exactly the line of accountability and authority that is necessary and that works, so we see the way we are implementing this is working.
Page 31 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC But in that example, the director, I guess Assistant Secretary for Environmental Safety and Health, when they were determining whether or not to shut the plant down actually does have a dual hat for that one purpose so that if they needed to he would have the legal authority to go ahead and tell them to shut it down.
That is just a technicality, but the way the law is written we felt we had to do that in order to continue the authorities he has had since 1986. He has never exercised that authority, but he has had that authority over all the operations and, if ever needed, that would give you the legal protections that you need at the site to be able to say yes, this has been shut down properly.
Mr. KLAUS. Congressman, let me just summarize. One of the questions that some people may say is what were ES&H people doing running around Pantex. We cited the example to try and explain to you how we felt that non-NNSA support offices would function once the NNSA was established in terms of supporting and providing expertise to resolve that problem, and that is part of why we tried to explain it to you. The authority and
Mr. SISISKY. There is nothing wrong in seeking advice. I do not think there is anything in the law. There is nothing wrong in that.
Mr. KLAUS. And that is our interpretation, and I think the example was cited to try and help you understand how we see these types of problems being dealt with in the future.
Mr. THORNBERRY. Mr. Secretary, you are obviously talking about something near and dear to my heart. I want to be clear. Do you think the way this worked within the past two weeks is working well?
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Mr. GLAUTHIER. Yes, I think it is, Mr. Chairman. It is in your district. If you are hearing anything different, please tell us because
Mr. THORNBERRY. No. As a matter of fact, the way you outline it in your testimony and what I am hearing from back home, this is exactly the way the law is supposed to work. You get the experts on environmental stuff come in here and advise them, but the responsibility for doing it is right down the line, and they can be held accountable if they do not do it right.
I think as Mr. Sisisky said, this is what this has all been about from the beginning, and, you know, we hope that this works out well, but so far this is exactly the way it is supposed to be working, and I appreciate your testimony, what both of you have said, because I think it really does help bring it home in a real practical example.
Mr. GIBBONS. Thank you very much, Mr. Chairman.
I want to welcome the gentlemen here for their testimony today, but I want to take off on a more ethereal concept that we are dealing with and ask some questions that you, Mr. Secretary, might be able to answer.
One is what is the number one priority in the Department of Energy today?
Page 33 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Mr. GLAUTHIER. I guess I would have to say the national security mission that the Department has, if you are thinking substantively, because of the importance that we have, but I think another kind of answer I could give you is more managerial in the sense of establishing accountability throughout the whole organization for the day to day missions that everyone is carrying out.
Mr. GIBBONS. All right. So you would say that the number one priority is nuclear security?
Mr. GLAUTHIER. No. The national security objectives or mission, which is the maintenance of our nuclear weapons stockpile for the national and international security purposes there, one element of which is national security.
Mr. GIBBONS. Well, then let me ask what the Department, if it has one, what is its national nuclear policy?
Mr. GLAUTHIER. The nuclear policy of the whole government at this point is one of trying to provide for a reliable and appropriate stockpile of nuclear weapons in case it is ever needed for defense.
Mr. GIBBONS. Well, one of the things I am trying to get at is what is the Department of Energy's nuclear policy because I notice when it came out of the Presidential Commission there was a distinct requirement to assure better communications between DOE and DOD with regard to nuclear weapons.
Page 34 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC My question to you is if the DOE and NNSA also have both naval reactors, nuclear defense items and nonproliferation, should there be some measure of connection between DOD and NNSA? If that is the case, should we have NNSA in DOD?
Mr. GLAUTHIER. There is a connection already. There is formally the Nuclear Weapons Council, one basis for setting policies regarding the levels of the stockpiles and the appropriate technical issues on the different weapons systems.
There clearly needs to be a lot of cooperation between the different parts of the administration, but the separation does not impede the conduct of our national security. Our responsibility is to design, build and maintain the weapons stockpile.
The Department of Defense responsibility is, of course, deciding what the needs are, the requirements will be, and then actually deploying them, but we have the technical expertise, run the laboratories and the production plants and all for that piece of the program.
Mr. GIBBONS. You said formerly the Nuclear Weapons Council. Should we reinstitute the Nuclear Weapons Council, as we have had in the past?
Mr. GLAUTHIER. Actually, it exists. It met earlier this week. It is still in operation. Yes.
Mr. GIBBONS. That is all, Mr. Chairman. Thanks.
Mr. THORNBERRY. Mr. Ryun.
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Mr. RYUN. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
I would like to address this question to the Secretary, if I may. During our debates last year as we were developing language within NNSA and the need to take upon changes within the Department of Energy and weapons lab, we discussed a lot of different things.
One of those things was related to the scientists. The scientists at that time said that they did not believe that there was a problem between securitythat there was a problem, let me try that again, between security and the coexistence of science; in other words, that there was not a very good mix.
Were you aware of that at the time, and do you still believe that that exists that there is this problem that exists between the scientists seeing a need for security and the development of what they are doing?
Mr. GLAUTHIER. I think there is a natural tension in the science community where many people are anxious to operate in a mode that is more akin to the academic models in science, but that everyone who works in our programs I believe accept the need for a very high level of security because of the subject that they are dealing with and that that balance of security and science is necessary to really watch carefully and to work with that.
Mr. RYUN. All right. Having said that, what have you done specifically to address that? In other words, if you recognize the tension, what have you done in terms of the implementation of this program to alleviate some of that tension so that the cultural differences that exist between each are brought together, that there is a happy marriage so to speak and that we are progressing in the right direction?
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Mr. GLAUTHIER. Well, I am glad you asked that. I think that is another very good example of the way we are implementing the program and trying to be sure the policy directives that would come out of the security area are not able to simply be issued unilaterally, but that they have to go through this Field Management Council process that I chair.
Any new requirement is examined first and we have an opportunity to hear from the operations in the field, to hear from the scientists and others, as well as the security people what the implications will be of a new policy on badges or a new policy on cyber security or any other areas before we put it in place, consider the views of those people and then make a decision at the top level of the organization.
In these cases, I find that they sign off on these policies. Then they are put in place and implemented by the line organization, but the staff office handling security is giving us their best advice and expertise. This process gives us the balancing to be able to be sure we hear from the scientists and we can make a decision that is an appropriate balance to put this in place and make it work.
Mr. RYUN. Okay. Thank you very much, Mr. Chairman.
Mr. THORNBERRY. Thank you.
Mr. Secretary, I understand that when Secretary Richardson was testifying before the Senate last week he agreed to make available to them a written legal analysis the Department came up with to support its position that dual-hatting is permitted. Could I just ask that that same written analysis be provided to this Panel?
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Mr. GLAUTHIER. Of course. We will.
Mr. THORNBERRY. Thank you. Second, could I also ask if we could get a list of the dual-hatted positions that you intend from one of you?
Mr. GLAUTHIER. Sure.
Mr. THORNBERRY. You mentioned six of them. We can pretty much get there, but if you would provide that list?
Mr. GLAUTHIER. Sure. We would be happy to do that, too.
Mr. THORNBERRY. Thank you.
Mr. Fygi, can I ask you? How long have you been with the Department of Energy?
Mr. FYGI. Since before it became the Department.
Mr. THORNBERRY. So you have been a Deputy General Counsel at the Department of Energy at least since it was created?
Mr. FYGI. I have been the principal deputy since 1977. That is correct.
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Mr. THORNBERRY. Okay. Now, today as you are testifying, are you testifying as the principal Deputy General Counsel of the Department of Energy, or are you testifying as the Acting General Counsel of the NNSA?
Mr. FYGI. Well, this sounds like another ethereal question, to use a colorful phrase used earlier. I would say both, but I also am testifying as the attorney in the Department who happens to be most familiar with the legal issues that are associated with the implementation of this new legislation.
Mr. THORNBERRY. Well, I think our concern is that as you sit there and testify as both, you erode away the insulation that we attempted to create in the legislation, and it is that, I think, that capsulizes maybe as well as anything the concern that the Panel has had with that approach.
Mr. Secretary, let me turn, and I want to have a clear understanding on a couple of issues. One is that you testified that you support, the Department supports, having a term of years for the first administrator, and I think there is widespread support for that, but then you went on to say that it should only be the first one because everybody after that ought to change out.
Why should this be different from the FBI Director or the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, the Chairman of the Federal Reserve? The list goes on. Why should it? I am curious what your opinion is. Why should it not be a three or five year term forevermore and have that kind of stability and some insulation from the ups and downs of political life?
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Mr. GLAUTHIER. Our feeling is that it ought to be more parallel to the Department of Defense, for example, where the Secretary, the Deputy, the Under Secretaries and Assistant Secretaries all are appointed by each new administration and do not have fixed terms of office. We support this first one for the reasons we talked about, but beyond that we think that it is appropriate that the person be part of the management team.
One of the things I did not talk about but that we have stressed internally within the Department is that we expect this Under Secretary to also contribute to the Department as a member of the top management team, and so I envision situations where the Secretary, the Deputy Secretary and both Under Secretaries are in discussion on some key issues affecting the Department, and this Under Secretary may well bring his expertise and experience to bear on broad issues that affect the Department. We want that person to be a member of the senior team.
Mr. THORNBERRY. Let me ask you about another area. In talking about the Pantex example and Assistant Secretary for Environment, Safety and Health, you mentioned that that person has to have shutdown authority, and that is the only reason that there is a dual-hat in that position.
I do not think I understand why that has to be the person to have shutdown authority because you have an administrator who can order a shutdown, or I suppose the deputy administrator can order Pantex shut down if there is a safety authority.
Within the organization itself, certainly if you have anything that is remotely serious, the Secretary is going to know about it. He can order a shutdown. Why does it have to be an Assistant Secretary who has this authority, and why are these other people incapable of exercising that kind of judgement if it should be required?
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Mr. GLAUTHIER. Well, that is a good question. We really looked at two authorities that are similar to this area, the other one being an enforcement authority under the Price Anderson Act to take enforcement actions against facilities, which the Assistant Secretary also previously had for all facilities. We did not dual-hat him for that purpose, and so enforcement actions and the Price Anderson will be taken by the Administrator of the NNSA and not by anybody else outside.
This one action we thought because of the potential for imminent hazard, an environment safety or health issue is special. It is an authority, as I said, that has never been exercised, but it has existed for about 15 years. We thought that because of the special expertise in that office and the special risk that would be presented in that sort of situation, we did not want to do anything that would delay a decision, an action.
If you had to make a recommendation and it takes an hour to reach somebody, there are some situations where that could be a problem so we just do not want to get in the way of what the right actions would be there.
Mr. THORNBERRY. I just do not understand how it is easier to get the Assistant Secretary on the phone than it is the Administrator, but let me turn to one other question, and then I will yield to my colleagues.
I understand, and, Mr. Klaus, this may be up your alley, DOE Order 470.2(a), which deals with security and emergency management, independent oversight and performance assurance program, was revised on March 1 and that the impact of this change appears to require that NNSA officials have to react to certain directions from DOE's Office of Independent Oversight and Performance.
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Now, if that is the case are we not violating the law, which says NNSA people are not responsible to anybody outside of the NNSA?
Mr. GLAUTHIER. Actually, I would be happy to speak to that one if I could.
Mr. THORNBERRY. Okay.
Mr. GLAUTHIER. Mr. Klaus may want to add to that.
The Office of Independent Oversight is headed by Glen Padonski and has served as or functioned as an independent oversight office for some years. Its function is purely as a staff office. It has no line authority at all so that it has authority to investigate, evaluate and report on what is going on in facilities around the complex.
The one that existed for several years had a broad authority over environmental safety and health and security. The reference you are making now I think is just in the environmental safety and health area. Is that right?
Mr. KLAUS. I think it is
Mr. GLAUTHIER. We split the office last spring.
Mr. KLAUS. It is just in
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Mr. GLAUTHIER. Okay. I was not sure of the Chairman's reference, but we split the office last spring in our security reform so that we have an independent Office of Security Oversight, and we still have the environmental safety and health oversight in the Environmental Safety and Health Office. They both function in the same way, so if I might answer with respect to the security
Mr. THORNBERRY. Well, can these people in this Office of Independent Oversight tell people in the NNSA what to do?
Mr. GLAUTHIER. No.
Mr. THORNBERRY. Okay. So it is a staff function, an advisory function. They cannot give direction, and NNSA personnel are not required to respond to
Mr. GLAUTHIER. That is different.
Mr. GLAUTHIER. That is different.
Mr. THORNBERRY. Okay.
Mr. GLAUTHIER. They do have the authority to investigate and to evaluate what is going on in any part of the operations, so they
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Mr. THORNBERRY. The NNSA have to answer their questions?
Mr. GLAUTHIER. Yes.
Mr. THORNBERRY. Okay. You bet.
Mr. GLAUTHIER. That is right.
Mr. THORNBERRY. But that is as far as it goes?
Mr. GLAUTHIER. That is correct. The example, and we were talking about Pantex earlier, is like that where the experts could come in, ask for information, try to figure out what is going on, but it is the responsibility of NNSA people to put together a corrective action plan and carry it out.
Mr. THORNBERRY. Okay. Let me turn to Mr. Hunter at this point.
Mr. HUNTER. Thank you, Mr. Chairman, and thank you to all the Members of the Committee for doing such a great job in this area.
Excuse me for being late. My schedule has not permitted me to be here for the whole hearing, but I would like to just go to one of the real-life scenarios that prompted the DOE reorganization and just ask you to walk us through how the tragedy that occurred would be averted under this dual hatted implementation of the plan?
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That is that as we know, the impetus or one of the incidents at least that provided the impetus for this reorganization was when we discovered a gentleman at least suspected of stealing nuclear secrets at Los Alamos, and there was at one point a meeting between Elizabeth Moler, Acting Secretary of Energy, and Louis Freeh, Director of the FBI, and included in the meeting were several other people, including Mr. Trulock, who was in charge of security.
At that point this gentleman was identified by the FBI as being suspected of stealing nuclear secrets, and in the words of Mr. Freeh, and I am paraphrasing, he said get this guy out of there. Do not keep him sitting there next to the nuclear secrets vault. It seems to be a fairly simple action to take. Fourteen months later, the guy was still there with total access to these nuclear secrets.
Now, as you can see, we put together a reorganization that in my estimation has fairly developed lines of accountability that are somewhat similar to military lines of accountability where if such a thing happened a guy could be the director of NNSA and could be dragged into the Secretary's office and held accountable for failing to move this gentleman.
Take that scenario that I just described. They kept this guy at the nuclear weapons vault for 14 months. Assume that this meeting had been held and that the Director of the FBI had said 14 months earlier get him out of there. How would this new construct operate with the dual-hatted overlay that you have placed over this thing? Run us through this thing.
Mr. GLAUTHIER. Sure. I would be happy to.
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Mr. HUNTER. I just want to make sure this does not happen again.
Mr. GLAUTHIER. We hope it will never happen again as well. Also, as you know, Secretary Richardson was very upset to hear how long this had gone on.
Among the steps we took was to also go back and try to examine how did it happen and to see that some people were held accountable for the fact that they had not acted properly.
Mr. HUNTER. I understand we were all upset, but how would you prevent it from happening again because one aspect that came through loud and clear was that everybody was confused as to who was to do what, and what we attempted to do was lay out lines of accountability so people had precise responsibilities and had to answer for those responsibilities, and there were not a myriad of lines of communication and direction emanating out of the Office of the Secretary.
Mr. GLAUTHIER. I think that the organizational alignment and the accountability that has been establishedwe feel we started establishing it last April, but that also exists in the statuteis the primary basis which will help us there.
There is a clear authority, line of authority and accountability, from that laboratory up through the defense program through the NNSA Administrator to the Secretary. It is clear that those people are responsible for running the programs.
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Last summer, once I had gotten into this job and this issue had come up, I was amazed to hear the Assistant Secretary for Defense Programs at the time tell me that he had no responsibility for security at all. That was somebody else's job. That is not the case today. It is not the case in the legislation you established. It is not the case in the reorganization that we put in place last year.
We all agree. We agree with you very much. There has to be a full accountability, and the responsibility for that sort of operation rests clearly with our defense program.
A second element of this
Mr. HUNTER. Okay. Let me just hold you up for a second and walk through some. I do not have the matrix in front of me, but under the construct that we put in place you have an NNSA director, and he has an Office of Intelligence. Now, he also has an Office of Counterintelligence, does he not?
Mr. GLAUTHIER. That is right.
Mr. HUNTER. Okay. And the Secretary has a similar office?
Mr. GLAUTHIER. Yes.
Mr. HUNTER. The Secretary said I do not need two guys doing this job. I have some good individuals. I am going to give them dual-hats. You have the same guy basically at both levels.
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Now, if you want to hold the NNSAlet's say that this thing happened again, and you had a guy steal nuclear secrets from Los Alamos, and you left him there next to the weapons vault for 14 months. You know, I would say heads should roll, right? Even if you left him there a week, heads should roll. You left him there for 14 months.
Now, let me get this straight. In theory, you want to hold the NNSA director responsible. Bill Richardson should be able to jack him into his office and say what the hell happened, right?
Mr. GLAUTHIER. That is right.
Mr. HUNTER. But in this case his Director of Intelligence, the Director for the NNSA, is going to turn to his Director of Intelligence, and the guy is Bill Richardson's Director of Intelligence, right? How is he going to hold this guy responsible when he is Bill Richardson's guy?
Mr. GLAUTHIER. I think we ought to talk about the Office of Counterintelligence.
Mr. HUNTER. Well, yes. Counterintelligence, but the same thing.
Mr. GLAUTHIER. Well, counterintelligence does have the two positions. The intelligence offices do not exist that way.
Page 48 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Mr. HUNTER. How are you going to do that?
Mr. GLAUTHIER. First, the counterintelligence office needs to be headed by a top five person. We have the best person we can find heading the office right now for the Department, Ed Currin. He is also an employee of the FBI. We have dual-hatted him because we do not want the second best person to be in the NNSA.
Mr. HUNTER. Okay, but now answer my question. You have just had a terrible screw up here. Let's assume. Let's talk about the thing that actually happened.
In theory, Bill Richardson should be able to hold the Administrator accountable, but he pulls the guy in, and the Administrator says ask Ed Currin. He is your guy. He is the guy you put down in my place. How are you going to hold him accountable?
Mr. GLAUTHIER. Ed Currin, or whoever is in that Office of Counterintelligence, even if it is within the NNSA, is functioning as staff to the NNSA Administrator.
Accountability for taking action on an order like the one we talked about that said get that guy out of there ought to follow through the line organization. The staff person is not going to be the person who screwed up to not get the person removed. Somebody in the line organization did not do the job.
Mr. HUNTER. So how are you going to hold the Administrator accountable if Ed Currin, his guy, also answers to the Secretary? What happens when he says well, I thought he was going toyou know, this is what really happened. We pull these people up and question them under oath. Everybody said I thought he was going to do it.
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Mr. GLAUTHIER. That is right.
Mr. HUNTER. It looks to me like you are setting yourself up for precisely the same scenario if this thing should happen again.
Mr. GLAUTHIER. But these dual-hat positionsEd Currin in that job is a staff office. The staff is giving recommendations, advice, to the management, to NNSA's Administrator or to the Secretary. The staff people could be the same people.
Whoever did not carry that job out, that order, is in the line and did not do what they were supposed to do in the line authority, the line accountability. The staff advice you can get from the same person.
Mr. HUNTER. So how are you going to hold the Administrator responsible?
Mr. GLAUTHIER. On an action like this, we are going to look at the results.
Mr. HUNTER. Yes. If Ed Currin does not answer directly to him, if he is also answering directly to the Secretary, how are you going to be able to have a line of accountability if you have this massive loss like we had in this incredible gross negligence, in the least, that occurred?
Page 50 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC How are you going to be able to hold him responsible when he is Bill Richardson's guy, when he is the Secretary's guy? He is in his shop, and presumably he is having conversations with his people, and Ed Currin's answer is well, maybe I did not give this directive when I was talking to you, Mr. Administrator, but I sure gave it to the Secretary's guys when I was talking with his chief of staff four months ago when we had this meeting. I told him that this guy was stealing secrets.
Then we bring him in, and he said well, wait a minute. He said Ed Currin is the Administrator's guy. I thought he was going straight to the Administrator to get this fellow removed. What are you going to do? You have two lines of accountability, and in this case that confusion is exactly what presumably resulted in 14 months of this guy continuing to take nuclear secrets.
I mean, how are you going to do that? What are you going to do at that point if I give you that scenario?
Mr. GLAUTHIER. What we are trying to do
Mr. HUNTER. Are you going to fire them all?
Mr. GLAUTHIER. We may have to, but we did not have this situation exist then, and the problem occurred. We did not have an NNSA. We did not have a dual-hat situation. We had the problem.
We need to have clear accountability. We need to have responsibility that is direct, and I think that legislation provides it. This dual-hatting of the counterintelligence office is the information coming in. We need to have consistent information. We need to have the tie in with the FBI, very clear and direct.
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This is a person who is our lead liaison with the FBI. He is an FBI employee. We need to have that level of interaction. We need to have the connections very tight here.
Mr. HUNTER. Let me just suggest what you have built in this dual-hatting. You have built a formula for disaster. This is going to be like two outfielders running for a ball, and depending on which one calls it, whether it is the Secretary's office that calls it and says I am going to get Wan-Ho Lee out of there because he is stealing stuff, or the Administrator's office calls it and says no, I have the power just like you have, Mr. Secretary. I am going to get Wan-Ho Lee out of there. If one of them does not call it, we are going to have exactly the same confusion and the same massive loss that we had before.
We set up a construct where you knew who was responsible, and there were two avenues by which a security problem could be solved because when you set up multiple avenues whereby a security problem can be solved you are also setting up the prospect that there is going to be a presumption that Joe is doing the job, and it is not my duty. That is exactly what happened in this big loss. How are you going to get by that?
Mr. GLAUTHIER. The one point I would make again is that those outfielders or anybody who is going to take action on an employee is in the line authorities of the Department, and that is not the Office of Counterintelligence, which is a staff office. It is not a line office.
Mr. HUNTER. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
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Mr. THORNBERRY. Mr. Sisisky had another question.
Mr. SISISKY. Thank you. I see the Department did provide an update of the assessment we requested on March 2 at the Full Committee hearing, and I note that you see a number of areas as being complied. Is there a difference based on the activities since March 1, or is it a difference in interpretation of the statute?
If you remember, Mr. Chairman, I pointed out there was only one green as complying. Now there is a lot of green. That happened pretty fast. I applaud it if the interpretation is right.
Mr. GLAUTHIER. Congressman, it is a difference in the interpretation of what the requirements are.
Mr. SISISKY. That is what I was afraid of.
Mr. GLAUTHIER. I might ask our counsel to speak to that because I think many of these are a legal question of interpretation.
Mr. KLAUS. I also think that there is a number of them that are simply bringing you up to date on some of the things that happened March 1; for example, whether personnel had been appointed, whether the delegations had actually been executed, et cetera. So I would say probably about half of them or some portion of them, some substantial portion, are where we updated you and updated your staff on things that we had done and that took effect on March 1.
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Mr. SISISKY. You are the very first one to cite that.
Mr. KLAUS. Others may
Mr. SISISKY. One that you were adding, because you have it green. I guess that is what you are telling me.
Mr. KLAUS. That would be an area of disagreement.
Mr. FYGI. I think that is something, and I am glad you mentioned it because even though we will be happy to provide the written material that was addressed in the Senate hearing as you requested, we remain a little bit puzzled by the legal concerns expressed by dual-hatting.
Let me briefly state our own analysis that has thus far guided our conduct. First, as a matter of law, government wide dual-hatting has been entirely lawful ever since the 1964 congressional amendment. The Office of Legal Counsel of the Department of Justice repeatedly has considered this question beginning first with 1964 and extending through 1989.
Each administration has held the same legal view of the permissibility of dual-hatting. Each administration since then has acted on that view with a variety of double-hatted appointments being made at various levels of the government over the years since 1964, beginning with Sergeant Schriver's dual appointment as director of the OEO and Peace Corps, so dual-hatting as a general proposition is entirely lawful.
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I have not encountered any principal legal question or criticism of that. The remaining question must be, therefore, is there something in the NNSA Act that forecloses dual-hatting in this instance, and the answer to that in terms of parsing the statute is there is no prohibition in the text of the statute against dual appointments, none whatsoever.
There is a prohibition in the statute of NNSA personnel receiving command direction from sources outside the NNSA, but our view of the dual-hatted personnel is that when they are more acting in their NNSA capacity, they are likewise forbidden from being commanded by non-NNSA personnel, just as the statute says, so that is our approach to implementing the law.
We look at the plain text of the statute, and we are carrying it out. I am sure that this principle will be addressed at a much more overtoned level of detail in our written opinion.
Mr. SISISKY. And I think you told the Chairman you would provide a written opinion.
Mr. FYGI. Absolutely.
Mr. SISISKY. Good.
Mr. THORNBERRY. We are interested in the information you have to base your opinion, and I just have to smile because in your situation when you are wearing one hat you cannot be ordered from the Department of Energy outside NNSA. When you are wearing the other hat you can, except you told us a while ago that you are here with both hats and so it gets to be a very confusing situation.
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Mr. HUNTER. I would always claim the two hats.
Mr. THORNBERRY. Mr. Secretary, we are going to have to run to vote. Let me ask you very briefly.
You mentioned in your testimony that you are not going to be able to do all of the things with the budget that we asked, having each problem element outlined, limited term of authority and a detailed five-year budget. You testified earlier, I think, that that is going to come in the next budget cycle. Is that right?
Mr. GLAUTHIER. Yes, that is right. The five-year budget in detail I think is one good example.
Mr. THORNBERRY. Okay. I have one last question. I have not quite gotten this straight yet because I hear different versions. The additional authority you are asking for is for the Secretary himself to be able to reach down into the entity, or is it for the secretariat to be able to reach down into the entity?
Mr. GLAUTHIER. It would be for the Secretary to have that authority, and under the statute the Secretary may delegate his authorities for such direction in general only to me. He cannot delegate them any further.
Mr. THORNBERRY. So Mr. Falle, for example, would not be able to give direction? If he had a national security advisor, he or she could not give direction to the NNSA?
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Mr. GLAUTHIER. That is correct. There has been some discussion about a broader delegation of authority, but that is not what we have asked for.
Mr. THORNBERRY. Okay. That clarifies it.
As I mentioned, we have to go vote. Thank you both for being here. You all are dismissed, unless you want to hang around and hear the rest of the testimony.
When we come back from this vote we will have our second panel and proceed from there.
Mr. KLAUS. Thank you.
Mr. GLAUTHIER. Thank you.
[Whereupon, a short recess was taken.]
Mr. THORNBERRY. The Panel will resume its hearing, and let me welcome the distinguished witnesses on our second panel.
Page 57 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC We have with us Brigadier General Thomas Gioconda, Acting Deputy Administrator for Defense Programs, we have Admiral Bowman, Deputy Administrator for Naval Reactors, and Ms. Rose Gottemoeller, Acting Deputy Administrator for Defense Nuclear Nonproliferation.
Let me thank you all for being here and for your patience sitting through our first panel and our vote. We do not have any more votes for several hours, so that danger has passed.
Each of you has submitted written testimony, and without objection they will be made part of our record. If you would like to summarize or make some other comments, please feel free to do so.
General Gioconda, if you would like to start?
STATEMENT OF BRIG. GEN. THOMAS GIOCONDA, U.S. AIR FORCE, ACTING DEPUTY ADMINISTRATOR FOR DEFENSE PROGRAMS
General GIOCONDA. Good morning, Mr. Chairman and Members of the Special Oversight Panel.
On March 1, the Office of Defense Programs was folded into the new NNSA. The Office of the Assistant Secretary for Defense Programs that I have had the honor of being the Acting Chief of since Dr. Vic Reese left on the 1st of August has been redesignated as the Office of the Deputy Administrator for Defense Programs.
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The NNSA implementation plan maintains the Lead Program Secretarial Office, or LPSO, management structure established on April 21, 1999, by the Secretary of Energy. The implementation plan makes no changes in the reporting relationships of field operations to the LPSO. It also continues the project management reform initiatives with regard to the NNSA construction and other major projects.
As required by the NNSA Act, the following national laboratories and nuclear weapons facilities now report to the Deputy Administrator that I act in an acting capacity. The Pantex Plant in Amarillo, Texas; Kansas City Plant in Kansas City, Missouri; the Y12 Plant in Oak Ridge, Tennessee; Laurence Livermore National Lab in Livermore, California; Los Alamos National Lob in Los Alamos, New Mexico; Sandia National Laboratories in Albuquerque, New Mexico, and Livermore, California; the tritium operation facilities at Savannah River, South Carolina; and the Nevada test site, of course, in Nevada.
The defense program stockpile stewardship mission remains the same and center stage in the program. To maintain our existing nuclear weapons stockpile of safe, secure and reliable without the use of underground nuclear testing; to maintain the capability to return to design, testing and production of weapons if so directed; to preserve and update the nuclear weapons complex scientific and engineering infrastructure, something we had talked about before as being very important; to attract and retain the next generation of scientists, engineers and skilled technicians for our future work force.
I would be remiss in reminding everyone that our nuclear deterrent remains the foundation of U.S. national security. We believe that our growing track record of success in stockpile stewardship and the new budget and management structures we now have in place, along with your continued support, will bring us continued success in the supreme national interest as we serve the new National Nuclear Security Administration.
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I am pleased to report to you that three consecutive years in a row the Defense Department and the Department of Energy have certified to the President that our stockpile remains safe and reliable without a need at this time for an underground nuclear test, and a fourth certification coming through the end of NNSA should be completed shortly to the Congress.
During the past year, for the folks in the weapons program, we have organized our tasks to go on streamline business models that we will transfer over to the NNSA. Quite simply, in a world where competition for budget resources is intense, we need to be able to demonstrate clearly that we are taking every step to operate in a cost effective manner regardless of the organization that we are in. We must be accountable in terms that both the folks inside and outside the program can use to measure progress and accountability.
The men and women of the stockpile stewardship program continue to meet formidable challenges with ingenuity, innovation both in ways we do science and technology, as well as the way we organize the work we do. Without the critical work of the stockpile stewards who are in the NNSA at the labs, plants and in the federal structure, we could not perform this mission.
Our people in this organization have to remain our number one resource that must be carefully attended to both now and in the future. Because our people are what make stockpile stewardship work, we have embraced the report of the Chiles Commission on maintaining U.S. nuclear weapons expertise. The Chiles report has offered 12 specific recommendations on action under four broad categories of national commitment, program management, personnel policies and oversight, and I would hope that you would maintain those same focuses as you oversight the NNSA.
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A key driver in the time frames within which we have been planning and executing the program has been the fact that our scientists and engineers in the program with nuclear test experience are nearing retirement age and will be leaving the program in large numbers over the next decade.
To transfer the knowledge they have in a new generation is vital so that the role of testing and process of maintaining our stockpile is well understood in all its dimensions. This means we must retain test experience workers while we recruit and train new workers to make this critical transition properly, and the NNSA has to do that for stockpile stewardship to be successful.
In addition, we are attempting to make the transition in a booming economy where the technical expertise is highly recruited and rewarded in the private sector. The skill mix at the laboratories will shift away from the nuclear test base expertise to a more science based expertise for maintaining the nuclear stockpile. At the production plants, there will be more emphasis on computer network based design tools and advance manufacturing.
These changes in skill mix are major recruiting and retention challenges that the NNSA must face up to. DP and NNSA are addressing many of these issues and others that have arisen through the actions to implement the Chiles Commission.
Stockpile stewardship is a one of a kind endeavor. It is unique in that we are responsible for a product that everyone hopes we will never have to use. It is unique in the same way that the Manhattan project and the Apollo moon program were; innovative, creative approaches to something new under the sun with no margin for error. It is unique in that we are not making any new weapons, but are maintaining existing inventory. We must continue both to maintain current models without testing the total system, but also be prepared to return to design production and testing if directed.
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Every year our success on the job must be certified to the President, and the NNSA knows that and lives it every day. Our responsibilities and capabilities are often the focus of heated public debate and occupy a singular position in the formulation of foreign and domestic policy.
Properly supported and carefully managed, I believe the NNSA and the stockpile stewardship program will continue to maintain indefinitely a safe, secure and viable stockpile without the need to conduct nuclear testing. I know of no other national security issue more important for our nation in this new millennium of great challenges and opportunities.
Thank you, sir.
[The prepared statement of General Gioconda can be found in the Appendix.]
Mr. THORNBERRY. Thank you, General.
STATEMENT OF ADM. FRANK L. BOWMAN, DIRECTOR, NAVAL NUCLEAR PROPULSION PROGRAM
Admiral BOWMAN. Mr. Chairman, thank you very much for inviting me to testify today.
Page 62 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Naval Reactors, as we have discussed several times, was organized in the late 1940s by Admiral Hyman Rickover with a visionary concept of cradle to grave responsibility and authority for all aspects of maintaining and operating the Navy's nuclear powered fleet. It is a centrally managed, single purpose organization with clear lines of authority, responsibility and accountability for all aspects of its operation. Naval Reactors has enjoyed the benefit of full support of the Congress these many years, and, as a result, the country has benefitted.
The program's basic structure, policies and practices were preserved in an Executive Order signed by President Reagan upon Admiral Rickover's retirement in 1982. The fiscal year 2000 National Defense Authorization Act specified the Executive Order as the charter for Naval Reactors and, similar to the fiscal year 1985 authorization act, mandated that the provisions of the Naval Nuclear Propulsion Executive Order remain in full force and effect until changed by law. Adherence to the tenets of this Executive Order has been key to Naval Reactors' operational excellence and unsurpassed record.
Specifically, we are proud of the fact that our nuclear Navy has safely steamed over 119 million miles, equivalent to nearly 5,000 times around this earth. We are responsible today for 103 operating reactors, equal to the number of commercial power reactors in this country. We have accumulated over twice the operating experience of the United States commercial power industry and over half the operating experience of the entire commercial power industry worldwide.
Our outstanding and fully public environmental record enables our ships to visit over 150 ports around the world, visits that are critical to our nation's forward presence and the deterrence strategy and ability to project power.
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Last summer, as the Senate Armed Services Committee was considering the issue of reorganization of the Department of Energy, both former Senator Warren Rudman and Retired Admiral Hank Chiles recognized the importance of Naval Reactors' organizational structure to its success and to the national security in their testimony.
Admiral Chiles testified, ''I want to state emphatically that the Naval Reactors program, the DOE arm of that program, is carrying out its mission in an exemplary manner. Therefore, I strongly recommend you retain Naval Reactors' authorities, responsibilities and structure.''
Mr. Chairman, I would like to thank you personally, as well as Ms. Tauscher and the rest of the Panel and your staff for doing just that and for continuing the efforts in support of the Naval Reactors program and its basic tenets. The country and our nation's security will continue to benefit from your actions.
Let me just very quickly recount some facts about the Naval Reactors program. Today's Navy operates 83 nuclear powered vessels, warships, and one nuclear powered research submarine, and, as I discussed earlier, we oversee 103 operating reactors. Nine of our country's 12 aircraft carriers are nuclear powered, giving us the capability and flexibility to sprint where needed and arrive on station ready for sustained power projection.
All 56 of our country's attack submarines are nuclear powered. They possess inherent characteristics such as stealth, endurance, mobility, fire power, multi-mission flexibility, which afford unfettered access to contested battle space 24 hours a day, seven days a week, for as long as required.
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Once there, submarines can surveil new or emerging adversaries undetected and provide timely insight on their intentions and capabilities to policymakers without risk of political or wartime escalation. This is particularly valuable since many bad actors today understand their vulnerability to satellite reconnaissance and often employ deceptive methods to defeat it.
The usefulness of their traits has resulted in the near doubling of the intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance tasking requirements over the last ten years, while our submarine force levels have been reduced by nearly 40 percent. Should tensions escalate, submarines can also execute Tomahawk strikes from undisclosed locations without warning, often from inside an adversary's umbrella.
I predict that the future will demand even more and more of these first in/last out versatile platforms. It is worth noting that the joint staff, in conjunction with our unified war fighting CINCs, recently completed an exhaustive survey of attack submarine missions and force structure. That study reconfirmed that submarines are far from being Cold War relics. In fact, they provide unprecedented multi-mission capability and will continue to be of significant value as we execute the national security strategy in the challenging decades of the twenty-first century.
Finally, all 18 OHIO class Triton ballistic missile submarines are nuclear powered. They remain the most survivable leg of the nation's strategic deterrence triad.
The Office of Naval Reactors within the Department of Energy transferred into the National Nuclear Security Administration on 1 March, 2000. There have been no interruptions in program operations or support for the Navy.
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Thank you again for your continuing support. As you said, I do have a written statement for the record with your permission.
[The prepared statement of Admiral Bowman can be found in the Appendix.]
Mr. THORNBERRY. Thank you, Admiral.
STATEMENT OF ROSE GOTTEMOELLER, ACTING DEPUTY ADMINISTRATOR FOR DEFENSE NUCLEAR NONPROLIFERATION, U.S. DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY
Ms. GOTTEMOELLER. Thank you, Mr. Chairman, for the opportunity to appear before you today to present the statements both for the record and in brief on the new National Nuclear Security Administration and in particular my office, the Office of Defense Nuclear Nonproliferation.
As you know, Mr. Chairman, on March 1, 2000, the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Nonproliferation and National Security, which I led, became the Office of Defense Nuclear Nonproliferation. On March 1, I was designated by Secretary Richardson to serve as the office's Acting Deputy Administrator.
This new office also incorporates the Office of Fissile Materials Disposition. Laura Holgate, the Assistant Deputy Administrator for Fissile Materials Disposition, will also serve as the special secretarial negotiator for plutonium disposition, recognizing the continuing high level importance of this key nonproliferation mission.
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If I may say so, sir, I think Ms. Holgate has done an excellent job in that position in the past year. We are looking forward to completing very quickly a plutonium agreement with the Russians, and she has been instrumental in negotiating that agreement.
The new Office of Defense Nuclear Nonproliferation will have 141 employees incorporating 32 employees from the Office of Fissile Material Disposition. The fiscal year 2000 appropriation for the new office is $749 million, of which $547 million is for the former Office of Nonproliferation and National Security and $121 million is for the Office of Fissile Materials Disposition. The combined budget request for fiscal year 2001 is $906 million, of which $223 million is for Fissile Materials Disposition activities.
Implementation of the new NNSA has gone very smoothly from my point of view. I commend Secretary Richardson for his leadership in making this transition, and also for his recommendation to the President that General John Gordon be selected or nominated to lead the new NNSA. I have known and worked with General Gordon for over a decade at this point, and I fully concur with the Secretary's view that he is an excellent choice for the position.
I look forward to working with General Gordon and the rest of the NNSA team, including my colleagues here, as we continue to promote some of the nation's most urgent national security priorities.
I must say that one of my key goals in moving through this transition has been to maintain the momentum of our very important nonproliferation and national security programs with Russia and the other newly independent states, as well as around the world in places like North Korea and South Asia, so that has been my key goal.
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According to Section 3215 of the National Defense Authorization Act for fiscal year 2000, the functions of the new Office of Defense Nuclear Nonproliferation include preventing the spread of materials, technology and expertise relating to weapons of mass destruction, eliminating inventories of surplus fissile materials useable for nuclear weapons, providing for international nuclear safety and detecting the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction worldwide. These are extremely important goals, which I believe the structure of the NNSA will serve very well.
I would like to use this opportunity to share with the Members of this Panel, Mr. Chairman, Mrs. Tauscher, the many programs my office administers to advance these nonproliferation and national security goals. In particular today and in the interest of time, I would like to concentrate on an important new initiative developed by Secretary Richardson which I believe will greatly boost our cooperative work with Russia to stem the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction. This is our long-term nonproliferation program with Russia.
The President's fiscal year 2001 budget request includes a proposed $100 million program to improve our ability to respond to the most serious dangers presented by Russian nuclear facilities and weapons useable materials, bringing our cooperation with Russia to an entirely new level.
The proposed program has two core elements. The first will plug a serious gap in our efforts so far to manage fissile material from the civil side of the nuclear fuel cycle. Heretofore we have concentrated on working on the proliferation threats associated with materials from the defense side of the Russian nuclear complex, both plutonium and highly enriched uranium.
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The second part of the initiative addresses proliferation formidability in Russia's nuclear infrastructure. Under the first part of this new initiative, we propose to work with Russia to prevent the further accumulation of separated civil plutonium.
To facilitate a moratorium on the separation of plutonium from the spent power reactor fuel in Russia, we have offered to assist in the construction of a new facility for the new storage of spent fuel. This initiative is important, and, once implemented, it would cap Russia's stockpile of civil plutonium, which is currently more than 30 metric tons and grows at the rate of two additional metric tons per year.
I think it is important to note that our plutonium disposition effort, which Ms. Holgate directs for the Department, is aimed at disposing of two metric tons of defense plutonium a year, and that is one of the very important reasons why we feel it is important to get a handle on the two metric tons of civil plutonium that are emerging from the reactor separation activities, the reprocessing activities, currently ongoing on the Mayak production facility in the south of Russia.
We would also propose to conduct collaborative research into modern nuclear reactor technologies and fuels with the aim of devising more proliferation resistant systems. No major investments in this area will be carried out until our concerns about Russian nuclear cooperation with Iran are met. Finally, we would explore permanent disposition options for spent nuclear fuel and high level waste.
The second part of the initiative expands our already excellent cooperative work addressing problems of the nuclear weapons infrastructure, including working with the Russian Navy to help secure their stocks of nuclear fuel for the submarine fleet and for the icebreakers, and also accelerating programs with Russia to consolidate and convert fissile materials to non-weapons usable forms.
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Finally, and this is a very important area from my point of view, we have just achieved considerable agreement to work with the Russian Ministry of Atomic Energy to facilitate the closure of nuclear warhead assembly and disassembly lines at both Avangard and Penza-19. From an arms control perspective, as well as from a proliferation policy perspective, this is a very important area for cooperation with Russia.
We have just been working over the last few days with First Deputy Minister Rabyo, who has been in Princeton to take part in a conference, again confirming the Russian side's interest in accelerating the closure of this facility with assistance from the U.S. side. So again a very important new area where I think we can make some significant progress in U.S. national security goals with you help and support.
Mr. Chairman, Mrs. Tauscher, again in the interest of time I will not go over my additional programs, which are well-known to you, but I look forward to the chance for further dialogue as we proceed with this process. Thank you very much.
[The prepared statement of Ms. Gottemoeller can be found in the Appendix.]
Mr. THORNBERRY. Thank you.
Let me just ask each of you to briefly comment on what I think is our chief concern for each of your areas, and that is, this has been going on two weeks roughly. Are your missions being accomplished? Do you see any unsurmountable obstacles, things that we need to fix? Do you think your mission and the work you do fits in to the new organization, or do you want out as it were?
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I just think we need a sense. Each of you are working in very, very important matters to our national security. Are we doing the job, and is there a problem we need to know about?
Ms. Gottemoeller, I will let you start, and we will just go down the line.
Ms. GOTTEMOELLER. Okay. As I mentioned in my remarks, I am very, very focused on insuring that the missions of my organization continue to move forward because these nonproliferation policy challenges are paramount to our national security here in the United States.
In the short two weeks since the NNSA has been established, I feel that we have been able to move forward with continued momentum. There have been no new bureaucratic barriers, procedural barriers, interagency barriers being thrown up in the way of progress on our important goals.
There has been a need for information and outreach to the interagency, to my Russian colleagues, which I have also taken as a very high priority. It is important to insure that everybody understands what is going on around town and internationally as well, and so that will be an important area where I will continue to work because I want to insure again that everybody understands that we will be moving forward, moving forward quickly and getting things done.
Certainly from the point of view of the Department of Energy, my colleagues throughout the building have been very helpful, and we have been able to move forward in implementation of the transition.
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Mr. THORNBERRY. Do you see any unsurmountable obstacles?
Ms. GOTTEMOELLER. No, sir, at this time I do not.
Mr. THORNBERRY. Thank you.
General GIOCONDA. Sir, as far as the mission concern, as my statement says, that was the first letter I signed as a Deputy Administrator that says keep centered on the mission because if we lose that and we get tied up in trying to clean up an organization, we will have the same problem that you saw in assembling NNSA. We will get so wrapped up on boxology.
Boxology is nice, but if you do not have the mission centered right here then you have a problem, so as far as the mission is concerned I can tell you with no hesitation that the mission is center stage in our organization.
As far as obstacles are concerned, insurmountable? No. What we asked our people to do is to ask questions. You are going to hear a lot of questions, and we have to go through that, as anybody, when you change to a new organization.
I happen to have a little bit of insight in the sense that I was part of the Defense Threat Reduction Agency stand up, so I use that experience to say you are going to have the same type of questions because they mashed four different organizations into one, so that had a unique flavor to it, too, as you would use that.
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Also, we were all in the military during the Goldwater-Nichols days of trying to get the joint staff, the joint chiefs, so those type of experiences are not dissimilar, as a history major, to say that those are things you need to pay attention to because history can teach you a few things.
One of the things we have told our people is to ask questions. Do not be ashamed of the questions. Keep pressing for answers. If you do not get an answer, move it up the chain of command. It is my job to get the answers. Take a leadership role.
As far as the obstacles and what we will need to work on and fix, what we have to fix is making sure of teamwork, that you do not go off in your stovepipe and try to fight this thing. You have to establish teamwork very, very early, and that is a function of leadership. The quicker we get our team togetherthis is a team. We talk often. Rose and I go to the same meetings together, and she teaches me how to speak Russian occasionally.
As far as do I want out, DP or personally?
Mr. THORNBERRY. We better not get into the personal arena.
General GIOCONDA. I am an acting, so I am waiting for the appointment, and I look forward to working with Madelyn Creedon and being her Deputy.
Mr. THORNBERRY. Thank you.
Page 73 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Admiral Bowman, if there is one thing we heard as we were trying to write this thing it is do not mess up the Naval Reactors. Have we messed it up?
Admiral BOWMAN. No, sir, not at all. Mr. Chairman, as a result of the reaffirmation of the Naval Reactors charter in this reorganization, the transition has been virtually transparent. There has been absolutely no impact on my mission. I will not let there be. I see no obstacles. It truly is transparent in the workings in my organization.
Mr. THORNBERRY. Good. Thank you.
Ms. TAUSCHER. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
Let me take a second to thank especially Ms. Gottemoeller and General Gioconda for stepping into these situations. Certainly, General Gioconda, you stepped in at a time I know my labs at Livermore and Sandia appreciate your leadership.
General Bowman, I think you do run the most effective and efficient part of this organization, and I am hoping that under the continued leadership of the people in the NNSA we will have a merger and a maturation so that we can all look a little bit like the Naval Reactor program.
Ms. Gottemoeller, your combined Nuclear Nonproliferation and Fissile Materials Disposition. You alluded to it earlier, but can you assure me that it is working well and that it is a merger of two offices that previously had been parallel and that you think that this is the right thing for us to do?
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Ms. GOTTEMOELLER. I would be happy to, Mrs. Tauscher. We have, I would say, two things going for us in regard to the marriage of the Office of Nonproliferation and National Security and the Office of Materials Disposition into the new Office for Defense Nuclear Nonproliferation.
First and foremost there is a very clear and positive will on the part of both Laura Holgate and myself to insure that the transition goes forward smoothly. Laura and I have had frequent, frequent interactions and discussions on this, as well as a longstanding professional relationship to back us up. We have been working together throughout this Administration from the very first days of the Administration. The active transition team we worked together on, so we have a good, solid working relationship, and it has served us well through this transition period.
The second aspect is we have actually taken some steps, both in complete agreement, to insure that the marriage does happen quickly. For example, Ms. Holgate's budget person was very interested in having a wider scope for action, a promotion, quite frankly, and Laura suggested that she might be a good person to compete for the position of overall budget officer for the new organization.
She has, in fact, succeeded in that and has been established now in that position and she has been able to very quickly help to bring the two organizations together as the key budget person is a very, very important person for any organization. So there are both, I would say, personal and professional linkages that have made this work well and also some actions that we have taken, structural and personnel actions, that have helped to make it happen smoothly, so I do believe that it is going well.
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Ms. TAUSCHER. I met with Minister Rabyof this morning coming off the trip to Princeton and his meetings with the rest of our delegation, and he did not speak specifically about the marriage/merger, but it seems to me that anything we can do that is promotive of speaking with one voice, especially since NN, nonproliferation, and materials disposition are two of the three key elements, along with cooperative threat reduction.
That has everything to do with our ability to corral and stop any kind of brain drain in Russia and move them from a military defense positive to a civilian opportunity. I think that it is going to be very good for us to have this one voice, so to speak, and one organization and not to have the multiplicity of voices that we had in the past.
What do you think our short-term chances are of helping them demilitarize and civilianize their complex over the short term? The numbers of jobs that Mr. Rabyof talked about are obviously in the high tens of thousands and approaching 100,000. What do you think our chances are?
Ms. GOTTEMOELLER. I think it is very important, as we have done in the past year, to take a step by step approach, and perhaps you heard from Mr. Rabyof that term as well. He is also very focused on it.
That has meant embarking in the past year on a very precise strategic planning process for the cities where we are working, at the present time Sarov, Snezhinsk and Zheleznogorsk, and to insure that for each city we have in place a strategic plan that contains precise goals, precise metrics of success and precise steps that must be undertaken to achieve those goals.
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In the case of Snezhinsk and Zheleznogorsk, we are currently in the course of negotiating those efforts. Ambassador Ron Lieman even now is in Moscow negotiating with the Snezhinsk team to complete the strategic plan for Snezhinsk, which we expect, Minister Rabyof and I expect, to have presented to us at our May steering Committee meeting.
In terms of my overall expectations, those expectations flow from the strategic plan that is already completed, and that is the strategic plan for Sarov. It was the first out of the block, and here we have already seen some very significant action that has been accomplished.
One of the other meetings we had in Princeton was with Mr. Yuri Zavalyusyn who is the director of the Avangard warhead assembly and disassembly plant at Sarov, and we are negotiating now very precise steps to create a dialysis medical equipment production company at the Avangard plant to actually convert several buildings to remove them from outside, bring them outside the fence line and to have them established as a concrete medical production capability. So we already see some very, very precise accomplishments.
I am extremely pleased about the progress that we have been able to make in that regard, in addition to all the other facilities we have been able to open up in Sarov in the last year, including the open computing center, the nonproliferation center and some others. So I do feel that the strategic planning route is the route to go, and we do plan to continue to pursue it.
Ms. TAUSCHER. What about funding for Nuclear Cities Initiative (NCI) and Initiative for Proliferation Prevention (IPP)?
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Ms. GOTTEMOELLER. Well, we have $7.5 million to work with in 2000. It is not enough. We could be making a lot more progress if we had more funds available to us because we basically have important work that has already been agreed with the Russians.
For example, in terms of the dialysis project I mentioned at Sarov, we will begin production on dialysis equipment with the funds that we have available, but with additional funds we could move on quickly to further conversion of buildings and moving on to production of dialysis peripherals, such as blood lines and related peripheral equipment if we had the funds available, but now it will have to wait until 2001.
So in terms of accelerating the shutdown of warhead assembly and disassembly activities at Sarov, we are a bit stymied at the moment because we do not have the funds available to have alternative production established at the plant.
Ms. TAUSCHER. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
Mr. THORNBERRY. Thank you.
General Gioconda, as the Panel traveled to all the sites in the nuclear weapons complex in December and January, one of the things that we heard the most was a frustration at not being able to have long-term planning and stability of resources.
I think one of the frustrations we have on this Panel in looking at how the law is being implemented is several specific requirements for budgeting to try and get at that budget have not yet been implemented. Is your organization working on a five-year budget plan so that we can have a planning process that more closely resembles the military?
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Second, what is your view about whether we ought to have a separate account for capital improvements? We heard so much concern about infrastructure deterioration, and we have so much work to do. It is just inevitable it seems these days that money gets taken for operating, and you do not repair the roofs. You do not do the infrastructure stuff that needs to be done. What do you think about that idea?
General GIOCONDA. Sir, when I took over I set three things down that we had to work on, and that was people, places and the processes that support people and places.
What we have done in Defense Programs over the last year is overhaul the entire way we look at the budget, and we did that in consultation with both the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) and the Hill. We have now divided the budget very simply into three areas, and that is directed stockpile work, which is center stage. That is what we do work for the Defense Department.
Campaigns, which are our science campaigns. It is all the science that would make the directed stockpile work. It underpins that for certification.
The third part was infrastructure because if you go over an analysis of a new guy taking over, the things that have caused the most trouble for stockpile stewardship is the infrastructure because that is what shuts down things, puts schedules behind, puts the people not wanting to come to work the next day or go to an organization if you are under a leaky roof or if you are in a 1940s facilities and things like that.
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That takes a lot of time. It took a lot of effort during this time of also changing the NNSA. We overhauled the budget. You have to get everybody's agreement because the appropriators have to accept the budget in that form, and it trickles back from there. We have done that.
Now what we are trying to do is work with the Defense Department to work on those requirements, tighten those requirements, have the DOE not as a customer supplier organization, but as a partner because if we do not supply, then he does not go to sea with the right weapons. We have to work on that. It is very important.
Then as far as the campaign is concerned, you always get into the question of how much science is enough, so what we tried to do is set end gains, and this is notas a Major, I was a programmer in the Air Force, so we go back to those types of things.
In infrastructure, we need a plan. We need to know where we are going and try to put aside some of our budget, which will be tough, to go there so we do need an infrastructure plan. We do need a campaign philosophy on how we are going to do that.
It all boils down in Defense Programs to we have to have readiness quotients very similar to the rest of the military. We have to be ready to produce pits. We have to be ready to produce tritium. We have to be ready to produce the parts and pieces and all that, and we have to be ready in certain science areas to work on the knowns and the unknowns that are involved with an aging stockpile.
Page 80 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC A long answer, but those are the things that we have been trying to do to get to that point. You can add it all up, but if you do not have the ability to prioritize it then it is just a wish list with no connection.
I would counsel that we have to do the program requirements first, then get the program, then have a prioritization process. Then I can give you a Future Years Defense Programs (FYDP) that is not just a bunch of numbers. Then you ask me the second question, and I cannot get to tell you where it is connected.
In this year's budget there is a FIDUP. I want to be able to trace it. I want to show you the stream all the way down. We are getting there, but there is probably about another year or two years before I could come before you and say that FIDUP makes sense, and I challenge you to go find where it does not.
Mr. THORNBERRY. You mentioned in your testimony the certification process for the nuclear stockpile. Some have suggested we need a second certification process for our plants; that we can meet a certain standard of production, if you will. What do you think about that idea?
General GIOCONDA. Sir, I have so many people certifying me and so many people looking over my shoulder at times that I do not know if I need an integrated process. I need to not separate plant and lab.
It is all part of the same function because if one failspeople forget that in the downsizing for the Cold War we are now down to one of every kind of thing in the complex. There is only one Pantex, there is only one Y12, there is only one Kansas City, there is only one Los Alamos and one Livermore, and there is only Sandia, and they each provide a unique aspect.
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The only area that we are a little duplicative of is two design labs. Well, we better have that right because it is like well, they only have a Navy Air Force and an Air Force. If you do not have that right, you are in trouble, and that is why that one is probably the most prudent investment you have, but the rest is all ones.
When we were overhauling the W87, we found that it was the whole complex that delivered that weapon back to the Air Force. If one of those parts failed, there was nobody to turn to if you had one of those, so I would tell you that yes, we need that, but that is the day to day job of the manager, the Deputy Administrator. If he cannot certify that to you, we ought to get a different Administrator.
Mr. THORNBERRY. Yes, sir. Let me ask you. You heard, I suspect, the exchange or the discussion of the particular problem we have had over the last two weeks at Pantex and how the organization has responded.
I do not want to talk about the specific issues, but do you agree with Secretary Glauthier that the organizational response has worked well and that you have the experts come in and give you the advice, and then you have the people who have responsibility to follow that advice?
General GIOCONDA. Yes, sir. I believe that I am accountable. I am accountable for Pantex. It is my job to make Pantex wake up every morning and go to bed every night, and when we discovered the issue that came up it was refreshing to be able to hit the phone, get everybody together, understand that I was in charge and be able to go to the Secretary and say I am behind what the recommendation is because I, in Defense Programs, do not have all the knowledge and brain power. I do not have environmental safety.
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I have some experts, but I do not have the whole to be able to call upon those things to deliver the program that you saw, and now I have to follow up on it. But in all cases you have to watch the aggressiveness of one organization or the other.
We have one edict. If there is not myself or my deputy's ink on a piece of paper that goes to the field from the headquarters, they are to return it to me with a question, and the question, because it affects resources that I have limited values of. You get that in the first couple of months of an organization, but as long as my guys in the field know to call home, we are okay.
Mr. THORNBERRY. Admiral Bowman, you heard General Gioconda say it is refreshing to have the integration of safety and security in line where you do not have people looking over your shoulder saying do that, do that, do that, but it is part of the requirement that is integral.
My impression is that that is the approach that Naval Reactors has always taken. Is that the case, and can you discuss with us a little bit why that works better than having overseers on safety or security or environment?
Admiral BOWMAN. Well, it is true, Mr. Chairman. Your intuition is exactly right, and it has been that way from the beginning with Admiral Rickover and codified in the Executive Order in 1982.
My situation is a little bit different from that described at the Pantex situation in that I have my own experts integral to the program in environmental, environmental law, people who have been with the program for 25 to 30 years, who understand the integration of the Navy requirements with the Department of Energy requirements. So I have had this opportunity foreverI say I; my successorsto be totally responsible, completely responsible.
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I had to rock back in my chair a little bit when I heard the Deputy Secretary talking about Tom's predecessor claiming that he was not responsible for security infractions. Of course we are. Of course we must be, so the inherent responsibility from cradle to grave, the inherent authority that has to come with that responsibility, in my view, is what has made this program as efficient as it has been and as safe as it has been.
General Gioconda spoke of a number of people watching over his shoulder. You waste an awful lot of energy when a situation exists that way, and consolidating that responsibility in a person and consolidating the actions that are necessary to insure the safety and security in my view is the right way to go and has proven to be the way in the Naval Reactors program.
Mr. THORNBERRY. It is hard to argue with the kind of success that you have in being able to take those nuclear reactors into pretty much any port in the country and not get a whimper of concern about it.
Let me ask you about another area. I think all of us are very concerned about how you get and keep top quality people, as I think General Gioconda said, in a booming economy. Obviously you are in a different situation to some extent in the services, but tell me how that works for Naval Reactors.
My impression is that people do not just get assigned there and ordered to go there, but there is something that goes on in the organization that makes people want to go there, an attractiveness, and that is what we have to do in all the other areas. What insight can you share with us on how we get and keep top quality people?
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Admiral BOWMAN. Well, it is a changing answer, and it is changing today because we are dealing with a new environment, an environment where loyalty to an organization is not what it was when I was growing up. We have to pay attention to that, and indeed Naval Reactors is doing that.
It may surprise some to find that we actually do look for new and innovative ways to do business occasionally. We are doing that with the people today. I am asking what are the satisfiers and the dissatisfiers, and what can we do to fix the dissatisfiers. In some cases you cannot fix them, so you do your dead level best to explain those dissatisfiers and enhance the satisfiers, make people feel that they are doing important work for the country.
Another little known fact is that Admiral Rickover used to do that a lot. He is not known for it. He is known for other things, but Admiral Rickover understood the psychology of people feeling that they are contributing and being an important part of the security of the country.
I have taken that as a major challenge because it is more difficult today, very honestly, to retain these type people. We have people who have been with the organization since Admiral Rickover. A number of my section heads were section heads for Admiral Rickover and then Admiral McKeeve, then Admiral Demars and now me, so they have been with the program for over 30 years. I worry about retaining their replacements, of course, the young people who are coming along.
To directly answer your second question, we recruit from the best universities of this country, both in ROTC and from the Officer Candidates School, directly recruiting people to come to work at Naval Reactors. I have the advantage of being able to skim from the very, very top of the engineering talent and the science talent in this country to come to work, and that part is easy getting the top talent in for the first five years.
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Convincing them to stay beyond five years is difficult to do, but I think it has to do, very honestly, with the sense of purpose, the understanding that the Congress supports us.
I do not want to sound corny about this, but it is a very, very important element in talking to a young person to be able to point over to the words that were said, for instance, this last summer about Naval Reactors and say wouldn't you like to be a part of this world class organization, and that is what we are, so we are doing okay.
Mr. THORNBERRY. We had the same challenge, and the trick is keeping them in the world class organization, in our nuclear labs and in our plants and in the work that NN does. It is a major challenge.
Let me ask you to comment on one other thing. Sometimes as we get into these discussions about dual-hatting your name comes up because your position is a rather unique one in the federal government. Would you please describe how your position works, how the chain of command works, and are you dual-hatted? Are you a dual office holder?
As we hear the lawyers spar back and forth, there seems to be some differences there. I do not mean to make you a lawyer, but can you describe, if you will, how your position works? That helps us, I think, to see if there is a difference with what the Secretary has proposed for NNSA.
Admiral BOWMAN. Mr. Chairman, I think that my dual-hat position is a little bit different than what was being discussed in the first panel.
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I am indeed dual-hatted, but within two different agencies. I have a four star Admiral hat in the Department of Defense, Department of Navy, and then I have this Deputy Administrator hat in the Department of Energy. So it is not within the same organization, and truly in my organization Energy Department people work alongside Navy Department people, and again I use the word transparent, on a day to day basis. It just does not matter whether you receive an Energy paycheck or a Defense paycheck.
My dual-hat situation is, I think, not comparable to what was being discussed in the earlier Panels. It is an extremely important aspect of that Executive Order, though, and again I thank you for recognizing that last summer.
On the Energy side, it gives me the arm's length that I need for the regulatory and oversight responsibilities from the Navy hat that I have. The Navy hat gives me the operational insight and the ability to call Jay Johnson, the Chief of Naval Operations, any time I need to and discuss the needs and the requirements from his view and deliver those needs and requirements, so I think it is not the same.
I think that it is certainly dual-hatted, but it is in different organizations so I am a little bit different.
Mr. THORNBERRY. I agree. I think you are right.
Let me just ask each of you to comment on one final matter. If you read some of the reports that have been made over the past 20 years and particularly the ones over the past couple years, what you see coming through there is that rearranging the boxes does not solve the problems which have existed in the Department of Energy. You have to also change the culture and the attitudes. It seems that that in many ways has the most resistance and is the most difficult to change.
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We had a witness or a person testifying here earlier who has been with the Department since 1977, since it started, and the difficulties in changing the mind set that develops over time is certainly apparent.
Can you describe first, Ms. Gottemoeller, in your organization? Of course, you are a newer organization. You do not have the same kinds of traditional problems that General Gioconda does, but tell me how you see the culture of your organization beyond the boxes and the arrangement of the boxes.
Tell me how you see the culture of your organization evolving so that we do have a clear chain of command, the clear accountability that everybody says that they want to accomplish.
Ms. GOTTEMOELLER. Mr. Chairman, you are quite right to take note of the fact that NN is a fairly new organization within the Department. It began in 1992 and it has had some comings and goings over the years, I would say, in terms of parts of the organization being removed and new parts coming in.
Most recently, Materials Disposition arrived in the Department with the establishment of the NNSA, but within the past year and a half we also acquired the International Nuclear Safety Program, so that has been a new addition as well.
In my view, each of these additions has rationalized the related missions in the Department so that they are now in a like-minded organization with similar missions and functions. In terms of international policy formulation and international interactions, I think we are much better arranged now than we have been historically to insure that we have a coherence and we have interaction among the various parts and an organization that is doing this international nonproliferation work.
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That said, there is a longstanding, and you noted it yourself; a longstanding tendency towards stovepiping in the Department of Energy. I will not say that that has not been present in the NN organization, but it has been my goal as the leader of this organization to break down that tendency and to insure that there is enhanced cooperation and interaction among the divisions of NN.
Mrs. Tauscher mentioned awhile ago the necessity of insuring that we are getting proper work done in various parts of the old Soviet weapons establishment, and I think, frankly, that the work done in one part of NN can help with that problem.
For example, I have been very keen to insure that our brain drain programs establish good working relationships with the other programs like the Materials Disposition Program and the Material Protection Control and Accounting Program so that the nuclear scientists can find work in these other programs and that there is good interchange and interaction.
The talent is certainly there in the old Soviet weapons establishment among the Russian technicians and engineers to do things like create sensor systems and monitors for use in the Material Protection Control and Accounting Program, so I have been very mindful of the necessity to enhance communication and interchange among the various parts of NN to insure that we have a more rational overall approach.
Mr. THORNBERRY. General Gioconda, how do you fix the culture?
General GIOCONDA. Well, the first thing you do is try to get everybody on the same page. You have the Forestall Building. You have Germantown. You have four field offices. You have three labs. You have several plants. That is the challenge. How do you get that all on the same page where people think maybe they are doing different things, but they are not. They are not doing the same thing. They are all interrelated.
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The first thing I would tell you is leadership stability. You mentioned that. The quicker you get the team installed, the better off you are. That leadership stability leads to trust, and then if you get the trust after the first confrontation or the first leaders are easy, but they wait for the first problem. After you get through the first problem, then you build trust and loyalty. That will be the challenge of General Gordon. He knows that, and we could not find a better man.
Then what you have to do is communication. That is where I think the problems have evolved since my two and a half years there. I am not an expert. It is communication in and out of the organization.
When I got there, the DOD and the DOE were not communicating very well. I think they are doing better. They have to communicate about what the mission is, what the needs are, and they are all on the same page for national security.
You have to just spend 30 seconds with Edward Teller and say in the national interest, and you get it real quick, but our young guys have not had that opportunity of being in those guys' presence. Then it is easy. Communication in and out.
Now we have plants and labs that come together in meetings. I call it the navigators meetings. We have weekly conference calls with everybody in an organization. We put them in parts. Then we put them together. That takes a lot of time and attention, but that is the time and attention that needs to happen if the NNSA is going to get off on the right foot.
Page 90 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Mr. THORNBERRY. Thank you.
Admiral Bowman, anything you want to add?
Admiral BOWMAN. I would just note that along with the many things that my colleagues correctly pointed to, the clear lines of authority and responsibility are a very important part of establishing the culture that you are aiming for.
General Gioconda is absolutely right about communications. If you take the time to explain, as an example, the reasons for security I think that you do not have the kind of comments that we heard all last summer about the disdaining of security requirements.
It does require stable leadership. Also, a tenured position for the three positions at this table I would argue would be important and even beyond that. I think that this should not be a political appointee job. I think that appointees to these positions for the stability of that leadership that the General was talking about should be qualified by reason of experience and training, just as the Executive Order requires my position to be.
I think the single mission focus aspect of what we should be about is an important part of establishing that culture. My organization knows that we are there for one thing and one thing only, and that is to design and build the world's best four ships to put our sailors, our men and women, on to fight the very best they can if, God forbid, it has to happen.
There are no diversions. There are no digressions. We understand that that is what we do, and I think the more that gets inculcated in the other two organizations, the better that culture will become.
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Mr. THORNBERRY. Let me thank you all for being here, and we certainly appreciate what each of you do. We want to work in partnership with you to make this new organization work as effectively as it possibly can.
We appreciate your testimony today, and the Panel hearing stands adjourned.
[Whereupon, at 12:40 p.m. the Panel hearing was adjourned.]
A P P E N D I X
March 16, 2000
[The Appendix is pending.]